Evans D – 1939

BB Gazette Vol.49 No.1  – The Boys’ Brigade Cross for Heroism has been awarded to Private Donald Evans and Private Donald Blaney, both of the 5th London (Ontario) Company, for their rescue of a man from drowning in the Thames River, Ontario, on December 29th, 1939.

The Boys, who were both only twelve years of age at the time, were walking beside the partly frozen river when they observed a man walking across the snow and then on to the ice. He seemed to be acting rather strangely, and the Boys were amazed to see him proceed out towards the middle of the river, where he fell in through the thin ice. The Boys rushed across the ice and, with difficulty, succeeded in grasping the man and getting him on to firm ice again. The man was completely exhausted, but they got him to the shore, where they lit a fire, and when he rallied they took him to a farmhouse near by, and hospital orderlies were sent for.

It transpired that the man was a shell shock casualty of the last war who had escaped from hospital and for whom search was being made. A passing hunter was a witness of the rescue. The Boys’ report concludes : “After telephoning to the hospital we left the farmhouse. The lady gave us both some cookies!”

Boys Brigade Cross for Heroism


Share This

This account has been complied using records held in The Boys’ Brigade Archive Collection, local and national newspaper archives and other sources. If there are any omissions or errors we sincerely apologise, and request that you come forward with this information, so that this can be corrected.


Heritage -
Newsletter of The Boys' Brigade Archive

Heritage is the newsletter of The Boys’ Brigade Archives. Volumns 1 and 2 were published in print form by the BB Archive Members Association. Volumn 3 onwards is a digital newsletter sent to supporters of the BB Archives monthly.


The Boys’ Brigade Archive Trust relies on supporters to further the preservation and promotion of the Heritage of The Boys’ Brigade, ensuring that is is accessible and relevant to future generations of young people. If you are able to support our work though a financial donation, by the donation of artifacts, photographs and paperwork of by volunteering please click on the links below. If you wish receive our monthly newsletter please sign up. We look forward to hearing from you and advancing the work of The Boys’ Brigade Archive Trust.

Whats' new

Our volunteer researchers are constantly developing content for The Boys’ Brigade Virtual Museum.

Links to our brand new content can be found below.